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Gallery: Drawings of a Mathematical Savant

Illustration of pi

Illustration of pi

(Image credit: Courtesy of Jason Padgett)

Jason Padgett suffered an attack that gave him extraordinary mathematical abilities, a case of acquired savant syndrome. He created these drawings of how he sees reality. "I drew circles out of 180 triangles, then 360, then 720. With a finer pencil, he could draw even more. Through this process, I came to understand how pi is calculated by measuring the area of a circle."

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Hawking radiation

Illustration of Hawking radiation

(Image credit: Courtesy of Jason Padgett)

"This is the image I see in my mind's when I think of Hawking radiation and the way radiation is emitted from micro black hole. It's my most difficult drawing to date — it took me nine months to complete."

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Quantum hand

Illustration of quantum hand

(Image credit: Credit: Courtesy of Jason Padgett)

"I see this image in my mind's eye, now in 3-D, every time imagine how my hand moves through space-time."

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Double-slit experiment

Illustration of Double-Slit Experiment

(Image credit: Courtesy of Jason Padgett)

"When I look at waves of water interfering with one another, I see overlapping iterations of my pi image. This drawing was also inspired by the double-slit experiment, which reveals the interactions of light waves."

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Water in drain

Illustration of Water in Drain

(Image credit: Courtesy of Jason Padgett)

"This is the pattern of lines I see overlaid on water going down the drain in the shower or the sink."

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Quantum star

Illustration of quantum star

(Image credit: Courtesy of Jason Padgett)

"After I began to practice meditation, the two-dimensional images I saw in my head became three-dimensional. 'Quantum Star' was my first drawing inspired by this new shift in perception."

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Illustration of pi (180)

Illustration of pi

(Image credit: Courtesy of Jason Padgett)

Circle drawn from 180 triangles.

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Illustration of pi (360)

Illustration of pi

(Image credit: Courtesy of Jason Padgett)

Circle drawn from 360 triangles.

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